10acity – Kansas City Chiefs Winning Streak

Marcus Peters showing great defense – Photo credit: kcchiefs.com

10acity – Kansas City Chiefs Winning Streak

By Neta Davis @ND622

Neta Davis, Official Kansas City Chiefs Fan Reporter
Official Kansas City Chiefs Fan Reporter

For the first time in Kansas City Chiefs’ history, a team has a winning streak of ten consecutive games.  Made only more unbelievable by the fact that as late as October 24, they were 1-5 on the 2015 season.  Here’s a look at the ten contests that got the Chiefs to the playoffs and had them knocking on the door to take the AFC West Division title:

October 25 – Steelers 13 – Chiefs 23

Pittsburgh started their third string quarterback in this contest, but at this point, Chiefs Kingdom was just relieved to get their second win.  Remember, just two weeks before RB Jamaal Charles was lost for the season to injury and WR Jeremy Maclin was out with a concussion from the previous week.  This is the game where we all started to learn how to spell RB Charcandrick West’s name (22 carries, 110 yards, first career TD) and respect WR Chris Conley’s and WR Albert Wilson’s talents.  TE Travis Kelce (5 catches, 73 yards) kept confirming he’s a receiving threat.  The final tinkering of the offensive line finally clicked, too, and set the stage for some great passing games the rest of the season.  S Eric Berry got a beautiful interception as well, returning it for 15 yards that led to a TD.  Chiefs won the turnover battle 3-0, thanks to LB Derrick Johnson, LB Tamba Hali, and Berry.  Tamba had two sacks; Kansas City McDonald’s fans were happy.

November 1 – Lions 10 – Chiefs 45

Several outlets have reported the players saying this was the turning point in the season for them.  After an initial score by Detroit, Kansas City went on to accumulate 38 unanswered points, leading 24-3 at the half.  QB Alex Smith ran for 78 yards!  Defense racked up six sacks!  West, Smith, RB Spencer Ware, WR De’Anthony Thomas, Kelce, and Maclin each scored, with K Cairo Santos making all extra PATs and a FG to boot.  This game was definitely worth the trip for me to London!  With this win, the Chiefs tied the Patriots for the most points scored in an international game and became the first team to give up a home game to play internationally and to qualify for playoffs in the same season. 

November 15 – Chiefs 29 – Broncos 13

Alex Smith - Photo credit: kcchiefs.com
Alex Smith – Photo credit: kcchiefs.com

This was a HUGE morale booster for Chiefs Kingdom, and the first time Coach Andy Reid and Smith scored a win against the Broncos.  The defense got five sacks (OLB Justin Houston ended up with 2 sacks and 3 QB hits), Santos made five FGs, and held them to 40 offensive yards in the first half, leading 19-0.  CB Marcus Peters intercepted the first pass of the game, and CB Sean Smith, ILB Josh Mauga, S Ron Parker, and Berry followed his lead. Santos hit four FGs in the first half.  With Kansas City leading 22-0 into the third quarter, a change of quarterbacks for Denver might be the marking the end of the Manning era; ironic that it came in the same game where he became the all time passing leader.   West closed out the game with an 80 yard TD run that made the score 29-0 early in the fourth.  Defeating Denver at home gave strength to the hope that the Chiefs were the team that they thought they were at the beginning of the season.

November 22 – Chiefs 33 – Chargers 3

Despite losing West and Thomas, this was another win and set the record to 5-5.  Smith went 20/25 for 253 yards and still interceptionless in seven games, both a franchise record and 2015 NFL season best.  Houston had a pick-6 after reading the Chargers’ quarterback’s body language, abandoning the potential sack and reaching for the air instead.  Ware more than competently handled the running duties (11 carries, 96 yards, 2 TDs), with West getting in a single 47 yard run before pulling his hamstring.  Hali had two sacks, continuing to play like a much younger athlete and landing in the Top 50 list of the NFL’s all time career sackers (85) and for the team’s sack records is only second to LB Neil Smith in all time sacks and to beloved and Pro Football Hall Of Famer DB Derrick Thomas in multi sack performances (20 compared to 27).  Kansas City’s defense held San Diego to their lowest offensive yards of the season (201).  Refrigerator Perry has nothing on NT Dontari Poe, who at 346 pounds lined up as a fullback, took the ball, leapt in for six points and became the heaviest man in the NFL to score.  (Refrigerator Perry was a slim 335.)

November 29 – Bills 22 – Chiefs 30

Halfway through the (then-unknown) winning streak and the first of several rainy home games.  This game shook fans’ confidence, as pass defense was poor in the first half; normally reliable P Dustin Colquitt had a bad day; and injuries stacked up–Houston, LG Jeff Allen, LT Eric Fisher, and C Mitch Morse.  But in the end, a W was in the books.  What was different this time was that the team overcame the setbacks, something to which Chiefs Kingdom isn’t accustomed.  Besides the win, Maclin’s stats were a bright spot:  big pass plays, adding up to 160 yards on 9 catches.  Hali has found the fountain of youth, disrupting other teams by sacking and causing fumbles.  Kelce had a 38 yard reception in the third quarter. Ware started and continued to hold down the fort with 19 carries, 114 yards, and a TD.  Is there now a running back controversy or the idea of a committee?  What a great job GM John Dorsey has done, getting so much depth on the roster. 

December 6 – Chiefs 34 – Raiders 20

This was the trap game, if there was going to be one—rainy weather, Oakland in a somewhat successful rebuild mode and can win any given Sunday.  Two Chiefs turnovers in the first half made fans nervous.  However, this was not to be Oakland’s day, but rather the date marking the first time Kansas City has swept all of its AFC West opponents on the road since 1995, outscoring them 96-36.  Wild Card Playoff talks take on meaning at this point, although some fans speak of it in whispers.  Outstanding rookie Peters came into his hometown stadium, got a huge penalty because of unbridled emotions, but then made up with fans with an important interception and 58 yard return.  A former Oakland player, S Tyvon Branch, capped the final score with a pick-6 in the final three minutes.  Maclin had 9 catches for 95 yards and 2 fourth quarter TDs.  LB Dee Ford filled in for Houston, got a hit on the quarterback, sending the ball into Mauga’s hands to the 1 yard line, setting up the TD–a hint of good things to come.

December 13 – Chargers 3 – Chiefs 10

A rainy nail-biter to be sure—low score, desperate opponent.  But, Kansas City held San Diego to three points again in the end, all scored in the second half.  They’ve now entered the playoff circle as the top Wild Card team.  Fans begin to talk confidently about post season.  Ford in his second week replacement assignment had three sacks of the team’s five and kept the quarterback on his toes.  He also negated a potential tying score in the last play of the game, excellently defending the receiver in the back of the end zone.  Running plays were split between Ware, West, and Smith.  Bet the San Diego defense regrets putting the fire in Smith with that late head-leading hit. 

December 20 – Chiefs 34 – Ravens 14

Ron Parker setting records -  Photo credit: kcchiefs.com
Ron Parker setting records – Photo credit: kcchiefs.com

Two defensive TDs and back up QB Chase Daniel was able to get some snaps in and give Smith a rest.  You know that means it was well-in-hand.  Kansas City is now the first team in NFL history to win eight consecutive games after losing five (what will they say in a few weeks?), and hopeful mutterings begin about the potential to win the AFC West.  Early in the game, a fake fumble by the Ravens turned into a boon for Kansas City.  Johnson forces a fumble that Branch took to the house.  Santos tied a franchise record from 1980 for four 50+ yard FGs in a season.  Peters finally had enough of being tested by Baltimore and took a pick-6 90 yards late in the game to seal it shut and for good measure intercepted again before the end of the game.  Just like the Steelers game, the Chiefs won the turnover battle 3-0.  Take that, Ravens!

December 27 – Browns 13 – Chiefs 17

Now this team has tied the franchise record for consecutive wins set by the 2003 and 2009 squads.  Keep in mind at this point they are without Charles, Houston, and Hali.  Being without THE two pass rushers allowed Cleveland’s quarterback to make some big plays.  Smith continued to scramble, 54 yards overall, with a 29 yard run late in the first half.  Maclin accumulates over 1,000 yards this season in receiving in the first half.  Peters ties Kansas City’s record for rookie interceptions and should be NFL’s Defensive Rookie of the Year.  Paul Rudd banged the drum to set the tone for the game, and coach Andy Reid ends the day with the dab.

January 3 – Raiders 17 – Chiefs 23

10!  10!  10!  I was fortunate enough to attend this game.  The first and second drives down the field and scores were enthralling.  They held a 13 point lead until late in the fourth quarter, when Oakland had a momentary offensive attack (as a whole, they only converted 3 of 14 first downs).  A great game plan kept the ball in play and out of Raiders’ hands to put a W in the books.  LB DJ Alexander blocked a punt for a safety, both events that haven’t happened since Fall 2012.  The Oakland quarterback was sacked five times, one of which gave Parker the Chiefs record for career sacks by a defensive back (7).  Maclin now also holds the Kansas City record for the most receptions by a WR in a season.   Rookie Peters is now the top Chief for his 26 passes defended in a season.  Smith threw two uncharacteristic interceptions, one for a pick-6, but ended up with 9 carries for 61 yards, setting some franchise records.  Kansas City’s ability to keep the offense on the field and to defend well looks promising for the playoff matchup next week against the Houston Texans.  Oh, and you might have heard about the cat that attended—we had a squirrel run through our section.  Chiefs Animal Kingdom.

The most remarkable thing about these ten games?  All the different players that have had a major impact on the games.  Almost 30!  And that doesn’t even begin to acknowledge the contribution of all the players who have solidly done their job game in and game out.  This may be what has been missing from other successful Kansas City Chief teams—the comraderie and the attitudes that make the whole greater than the sum of its parts.

It’s been a wonderful, Hollywood like season.  Chiefs fans are looking forward to the results in Houston this coming Saturday.  After all, that city has posted good results for KC Sporting and the Royals in 2015.  Here’s to a hat trick!

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